Are internet speeds fast and reliable enough for digital nomads in Tulum?

#1

Do any digital nomads here live and work from Tulum? Has anyone in the recent past?

I’ve been researching spending the fall in Tulum so I can work and also go to a great immersive Spanish school I found there. However, I recently started seeing a lot about internet connections being slow, going in and out if there is rain in Tulum, going down for a week at a time. On top of all that, I also heard that cellular connections are spotty there and that there isn’t 4G there yet. Airbnb hosts I contacted have said mixed things and the ones who were specific said that their internet connections were only 1mb up and 256k down…

Can anyone confirm or deny? Is Tulum’s infrastructure not quite ready for digital nomads?

#2

It definitely wasn’t very fast (was there in January 2015). I don’t think you’ll be able to do a ton of work unless you are very patient. We definitely had a connection (stayed in town), but it just wasn’t very fast. That said, if you can do some of your work via telephone, you can get a SIM card from IUSACELL or whatever and call the US for free (some of the plans have unlimited US calling) and you should be able to get a connection for that easily.

#3

Thank you for the info, Lisa. Appreciate it.

#4

Seconding what Lisa said. I was there in May and the internet was very slow, especially by the beach. It worked slightly better in town, but went out frequently.

#5

I was in Tulum from Feb 2015 thru July 2015 and I can tell you that in my experience the internet speed & reliability were both horrible. I am led to believe that if you live right along the main highway that either cable or xDSL are available and relatively fast. Other than that, the infrastructure is lacking and where I lived, I had to resort to wimax which is extremely expensive (~100USD/month for 5mb down) which I could have made work if I actually got that speed, but rarely did. I experienced random dropouts lasting from hours to days. Indeed there is no 4G available and for the most part, 3G wasn’t very good either. Tulum also tends to be more expensive than many other places in Mexico - but my requirements for housing that is both spacious and comfortable probably contribute significantly to that.

#6

I’m in Tulum right now (November 2016). I would assume the worst if you’re staying on the beach. However, in town you can find a good connection on the main road. I’m at Campanella Cremerie and getting 30/down 10/up with a 6ms ping on their wifi.

There’s also 4G now with a Telcel sim. However, you have to be on the main road or very close to it. On the main road with my Telcel sim I’m getting 20/down, 20/up, 50ms ping, but I’ve been a few blocks away where I can’t get 4G or even decent 3G. So it’s really hard to say where you’ll get a good signal.

I wouldn’t count on getting a good connection on the beach, especially as you move further south. However, I’m sure you can find a good connection if you search for it. I had 4/down with the wifi at Diamante K the other day which was pretty good. Other spots I’ve tried on the beach were unusable.

Just so you know, a lot of the best beach spots/restaurants are deceivingly far from town, so I would make sure you consider that since the appeal of Tulum is the beach. IMO not the best place to learn Spanish either since the default is English in so many places.

FYI: I’ve only been here a few days so take it for what it’s worth.

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#7

Has anyone been to Coworking Karma Tulum? Is it even still open (lots of brochure/marketing stuff, but it’s all old) http://coworkingkarmatulum.com

We’re headed there for Mar/Apr/May… just doing due diligence.

TY @avermat for the above info, very helpful.

#8

I just sent Coworking Karma an email asking about their internet. I’m hoping to go there for about a month in Feb/March.

From their web presence, it does seem doubtful that they’re even still open. :frowning:

EDIT: Just got an non-deliverable notification on the email. Looks like they’re MIA.

#9

Bummer… but thanks for the update! What other options are there in Tulum?

#10

None that I can see…at least coworking spaces.

#11

The coworking space was dead last September - I tried to contact them but no reply.

I stayed in “Aldea Zama” - which is a new area between the maintown and the beach and had great wifi (20/8). There was a beach bar called Papaya Playa which had something like a 5/2 connection.

The rest was pretty shitty but it didnt bother me as I just worked from home. Cool place, way better than PDC.